see the forest for the trees

To discern an overall pattern from a mass of detail; to see the big picture, or the broader, more general situation. Generally used in the negative.

Smith is good at detail, but cant see the forest for the trees.


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • can't see the forest for its trees — If someone can t see the forest for its trees, they are too focused on specific details to see the picture as a whole …   The small dictionary of idiomes

  • see the wood for the trees — verb Alternative form of see the forest for the trees …   Wiktionary

  • forest for the trees — (USA) If someone can t see the forest for the trees, they get so caught up in small details that they fail to understand the bigger picture …   The small dictionary of idiomes

  • forest for the trees — (USA)    If someone can t see the forest for the trees, they get so caught up in small details that they fail to understand the bigger picture.   (Dorking School Dictionary) …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • Forest for the trees —   (USA)   If someone can t see the forest for the trees, they get so caught up in small details that they fail to understand the bigger picture …   Dictionary of English idioms

  • miss the forest for the trees — see ↑tree • • • Main Entry: ↑miss …   Useful english dictionary

  • not see the wood for the trees — See: not see the forest for the trees …   New idioms dictionary

  • not see the forest for the trees — see ↑tree • • • Main Entry: ↑forest not see the forest for the trees (US) (or US miss the forest for the trees or Brit not see the wood for the trees) : to not understand or appreciate a larger situation, problem …   Useful english dictionary

  • can't\ see\ the\ forest\ for\ the\ trees — • can t see the forest for the trees • can t see the wood for the trees • can t see the woods for the trees v. phr. To be unable to judge or understand the whole because of attention to the parts; criticize small things and not see the value or… …   Словарь американских идиом

  • can't\ see\ the\ wood\ for\ the\ trees — • can t see the forest for the trees • can t see the wood for the trees • can t see the woods for the trees v. phr. To be unable to judge or understand the whole because of attention to the parts; criticize small things and not see the value or… …   Словарь американских идиом

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